Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano Eruption Isn’t a Covered Event for Typical Travel Insurance

by Daniel McCarthy
Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano Eruption Isn’t a Covered Event for Typical Travel Insurance

Photo: Shutterstock.com


Despite images of rolling lava and smoke coming out of Hawaii this week, the volcanic eruptions from the Kilauea Volcano on the Big Island will not be covered by the typical travel insurance provider. That’s because there have yet to be any reported travel disruptions from the events.

“There is not a covered event at this point in time,” Generali Global Assistance's Chief Operating Officer James Sion told Travel Market Report this week.

For the typical travel insurance plan to kick in, travelers would have to experience some kind of disruption in their plans. Since the majority of the 1,700 evacuees in Leilana Estates are residents and both Hilo and Kona airports, located on the Big Island, are up and running, that can’t be claimed.

“If Hilo or Kona [airports] shut down – then you have travelers that can’t travel,” Sion said. Both airports have been open without major delays or cancellations since the eruptions last week. As have many of the island’s most popular hotels and resorts, including Hilton Waikoloa Village, Fairmont Orchid, and Waikoloa Beach Marriott, which are all still open and accepting reservations.

“[If the] destination is uninhabitable, canceled services or has a significant travel delay, those situations may trigger coverage under their policy,” Allianz Global Assistance’s Daniel Durazo told Travel Market Report. “Standard travel insurance covers specific situations that may disrupt a trip.”

According to Sion, Generali has not received an atypical amount of calls relating to the eruptions. “The day after the eruption we did experience a few calls coming in and nothing out of the ordinary, nothing that has caused us any concern by way of volume,” he said.

Allianz Travel Insurance also has not received a tremendous amount of calls coming from people wanting to check coverage because of the eruption.

For a person to be able to use travel insurance because of the eruption, they would have to show proof of trip disruption.

What agents need to know
Travel agents should know that the best thing that they can do to assure clients that buying travel insurance is meant to provide peace of mind, Sion said.

Part of that is getting the right customer paired with the right policy — for example, someone who would want to cancel their trip to Hawaii because of the eruptions and despite the lack of disruption would need Cancel Anytime insurance.

“Cancel Anytime policies allow a traveler to cancel their trip for almost any reason and receive a reimbursement for a portion of their non-refundable travel deposit,” Durazo said.

Agents should let clients know that they can also use their insurance providers as a resource both before and during a trip.

“If travel agents are experiencing an increase in calls about whether or not there is travel insurance … the best advice that travel agents can give to their customers is to ask if they have the policy and understand what’s in it and then they can always call their provider,” Sion said.

“Our call center is open for most of the day. We can help put anyone’s concerns or fears to rest," Sion added.

  0
  0
Tip of the Day
Daily Top List

Best Travel Destinations Within 5 Hours of NY

1. Bermuda

2. Iceland

3. Miami

4. Austin

5. Tulum

Source: Business Insider

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=5c08d99e-83d0-e811-ba59-782bcb66a2f2

Taking the Advice of Experts and Cruising New Zealand

Visits to the unspoiled islands and flawless natural wonders of New Zealand make this journey one your clients will never forget.

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Have Consumer Direct Hotel Programs Peaked?
Have Consumer Direct Hotel Programs Peaked?

A recent leading consumer travel study shows that direct hotel bookings may have plateaued in 2017 — good news for travel advisors.

Travel Agent ‘Comeback’ Continues to Confound the Public
Travel Agent ‘Comeback’ Continues to Confound the Public

The so-called revival of travel advisors was a focus of attention during a panel discussion at the Skift Global Forum – and the source for some humble pie.

Can This Destination Wedding Be Saved?
Can This Destination Wedding Be Saved?

What if someone planned a destination wedding, and barely anyone wanted to show up? Travel agents offer advice on how to avoid the ultimate nuptial nightmare.

Cutting Through the Perplexity: Eight Critical Items for New Travel Advisor Businesses
Cutting Through the Perplexity: Eight Critical Items for New Travel Advisor Businesses

Industry expert gives guidance about legal issues including disclosures, insurance, copyright laws, business continuity planning, and employee vetting.

ASTA Urges Support Against Pennsylvania Tax Bill
ASTA Urges Support Against Pennsylvania Tax Bill

The bill is aimed at large, out-of-state online agencies, but its new hotel tax will detrimentally impact traditional brick-and-mortar travel advisors.

Four Travel Agents Shake Up Their Business Models for 2019
Four Travel Agents Shake Up Their Business Models for 2019

Whether it’s reconsidering brick-and-mortar, looking for new ways to retain talent, or reaching out to ‘social influencers,’ it’s always a good time to consider innovation.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Tauck